U.S. Denounces North Korean Missile Launches

kpopluv, March 14, 2015, 10:33 a.m.


The United States on Friday denounced North Korea's latest firings of a barrage of missiles as irresponsible actions and urged the communist regime to focus on its international and domestic obligations.

The North fired seven surface-to-air missiles on Thursday into the East Sea in apparent saber-rattling against South Korean-U.S. joint military exercises that Pyongyang has long condemned as a rehearsal for invasion of the North.

"The department urges North Korea to refrain from irresponsible actions that aggravate tensions, and to instead focus on fulfilling its legal obligations to the international community and its moral obligations to North Korean citizens," Col. Steve Warren, a Pentagon spokesman, said in a statement.

"As always, we are closely monitoring the situation on the Korean Peninsula. The onus is on North Korea to refrain from provocations and to improve relations with its neighbors," he said. South Korea and the U.S. kicked off their joint annual Key Resolve and Foal Eagle military exercises on March 2 as part of efforts to improve the combined forces' operation and combat capabilities to deter threats from the communist country.

The war game Key Resolve ended Friday, while the field training drill Foal Eagle will run until April 24.  On the first day of the exercises, Pyongyang fired two short-range Scud-C type missiles. In February, it also fired five short-range missiles into the East Sea just two days after the launch of anti-ship missiles under the guidance of leader Kim Jong-un.  South Korea and the U.S. have repeatedly said the drills are purely defensive.

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